How popular is the baby name Roy in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, check out all the blog posts that mention the name Roy.

The graph will take a few moments to load. (Don't worry, it shouldn't take 9 months!) If it's taking too long, try reloading the page.


Popularity of the Baby Name Roy


Posts that Mention the Name Roy

Over 100 baby names for 100 years of the Walt Disney Company

The characters Minnie Mouse and Mickey Mouse in the animated short film "Plane Crazy" (1928)
Minnie and Mickey in “Plane Crazy

Did you know that The Walt Disney Company has a birthday coming up?

On October 16, 2023, Disney will mark its 100th anniversary. (I learned this while working on last month’s post about Davy Crockett.)

Let’s celebrate the upcoming centennial with more than 100 Walt Disney-inspired baby names. Just to make things interesting, all of the names below refer to Disney-related people, places, things, and events from the pre-television era.


  • Walt (Walter) or Elias for animator and businessman Walter Elias “Walt” Disney, who was born in 1901. His middle name was passed down from his father, Elias C. Disney.
  • Kaycee for Kaycee Studio, Walt’s first animation studio. It was named after its location, Kansas City — “K.C” for short.
  • Newman for the Newman Laugh-o-Grams, Walt’s first animated films, which aired exclusively at the Newman Theater in Kansas City starting in early 1921.
  • Jack for the Laugh-o-Gram shorts Jack and the Beanstalk and Jack the Giant Killer, both from 1922.
  • Goldie for the Laugh-o-Gram short Goldie Locks and the Three Bears, also from 1922.
    • The name Goldie was used again (for an elf) in the future Disney short The Golden Touch (1935).
  • Alice for the Alice Comedies, a series of short films in which a live-action girl named Alice interacts with cartoon characters in an animated landscape. The first short, the unfinished Alice’s Wonderland, was created in Kansas City.
The real-life character Alice in the animated short film "Alice's Wild West Show" (1924)
Alice in “Alice’s Wild West Show

In the summer of 1923, after Walt’s second studio (Laugh-o-Gram) went bankrupt, Walt moved to Los Angeles, California.

  • Margaret for businesswoman Margaret J. Winkler, who agreed to distribute Walt’s proposed Alice Comedies series. The contract was signed on October 16, 1923.
  • Roy for Roy O. Disney, who, with Walt, co-founded the Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio (later The Walt Disney Company) upon the finalization of the distribution deal.
  • Virginia for child actress Virginia Davis, who originated the role of Alice. Her family relocated to California so that she could appear in 14 more films.
  • Kathleen for artist Kathleen Dollard, the studio’s first hire.
  • Julius for Julius the Cat, a recurring character in the Alice Comedies.
  • Pete for Peg Leg Pete, a villain who first appeared in Alice Solves the Puzzle (1925). He has since become Disney’s oldest recurring character.
  • Margie and Lois for child actresses Margie Gay and Lois Hardwick, who played Alice in later films.
  • Oswald for character Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, who was created in 1927 (by Universal Pictures) to star in a new series of animated films, the first 26 of which were animated by Walt’s company.

In 1928, the businessman who owned the rights to Oswald decided to create his own animation studio and produce the Oswald cartoons himself. He even hired away several of Walt’s animators.

It was a major setback, as Walt’s studio had already created more than two dozen successful Oswald films. But Walt refused to give up. Soon enough, he came up with an idea for a new character — a mouse!

  • Mickey and Minnie for characters Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse. They technically first appeared in the short Plane Crazy (May 1928), but their first wide-release appearance was in Steamboat Willie.
  • Willie for the short Steamboat Willie (Nov. 1928). One of the first cartoons to synchronize sound and animation, it was an immediate hit.
    • The name Willie was used again in the future Disney short Willie the Operatic Whale (1946).
  • Charlotte for seamstress Charlotte Clark, who designed and sold the first Disney-approved Mickey Mouse dolls.
Charlotte Clark label on a Mickey Mouse doll (1930s)
Charlotte Clark doll label

Walt’s studio not only continued making Mickey Mouse films, but also began another series of films, Silly Symphonies, which introduced a slew of new characters.

  • Horace for character Horace Horsecollar, who first appeared in the short The Plowboy (1929).
  • Adeline for “Sweet Adeline,” the song that Mickey (and a pair of alley cats) performed for Minnie in the short The Karnival Kid (1929). Mickey Mouse spoke his first words in this cartoon.
  • Clarabelle for Horace’s love interest, Clarabelle Cow, who first appeared in the short The Shindig (1930).
  • Pluto for Mickey Mouse’s dog, Pluto the Pup, who first appeared in the short The Chain Gang (1930). His name, inspired by the recently discovered planet Pluto, was first used in The Moose Hunt (1931).
  • Vance for actor Vance “Pinto” Colvig, the original voice of both Pluto and Goofy.
  • Fifi for Pluto’s love interest, Fifi the Pekingese, who first appeared in the short Puppy Love (1933).
  • Donald for character Donald Duck, who first appeared in the short The Wise Little Hen (1934).
  • Clarence for actor Clarence Nash, the original voice of Donald Duck.
  • Morty and Ferdie for Mickey Mouse’s nephews, Morty and Ferdie Fieldmouse, from the short Mickey’s Steam Roller (1934).
  • Clara for character Clara Cluck, the operatic chicken who first appeared in the short Orphan’s Benefit (1934).
  • Peter and Polly for characters Peter and Polly Penguin from the short Peculiar Penguins (1934).
    • The name Peter was used again in the future Disney short Peter and the Wolf (1946).
  • Bianca for artist Bianca Majolie, the studio’s first female employee in the Story department (as opposed to the Ink and Paint department).
  • Max and Toby for characters Max Hare and Toby Tortoise, rivals first featured in the Oscar-winning short The Tortoise and the Hare (1935).
  • Ambrose (or Butch) for the kitten named Ambrose (who aspired to be a bandit called “Butch”) in the short The Robber Kitten (1935).
  • Jenny for Donald Duck’s burro, Jenny, who first appeared in the short Mickey’s Polo Team (1936).
    • The name Jenny had also been used in the unrelated 1935 short Who Killed Cock Robin?
  • Elmer and Tillie for characters Elmer Elephant and Tillie Tiger from the short Elmer Elephant (1936).
    • The name Elmer had also been used in the unrelated 1934 short Mickey Plays Papa.
  • Mortimer for character Mortimer Mouse from the short Mickey’s Rival (1936).
    • Did you know that Walt’s original name for Mickey Mouse was “Mortimer Mouse”? His wife Lillian convinced him to use the name Mickey instead.
  • Monty and Abner for characters Monty Citymouse and Abner Countrymouse from the Oscar-winning short The Country Cousin (1936).
The characters Abner and Monty from the animated short film "The Country Cousin" (1936)
Abner and Monty from “The Country Cousin
  • Donna for Donald Duck’s first girlfriend, Donna Duck, from the short Don Donald (1937).
  • Hortense for the insatiable ostrich Hortense in the short Donald’s Ostrich (1937).
  • Snow for Snow White, the lead character from the studio’s first feature-length film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937). This was the first animated feature in history “to receive a wide, Hollywood-style release.”
  • Adriana for actress and singer Adriana Caselotti, the voice of Snow White.
  • Marge for dancer Marge Champion, the real-life model for Snow White. She was also the model for other Disney characters, including the Blue Fairy in Pinocchio.
  • Lucille for actress Lucille La Verne, the voice of the Evil Queen from Snow White.
  • Moroni for actor Moroni Olsen, the voice of the Magic Mirror from Snow White.
  • Larry and Frank for songwriters Larry Morey and Frank Churchill, who created the song “Someday My Prince Will Come” for Snow White.
  • Seven for the seven dwarfs from Snow White.
  • Huey, Dewey, and Louie for Donald Duck’s nephews, who first appeared in the short Donald’s Nephews (1938).
  • Tailor for the Mickey Mouse short Brave Little Tailor (1938).
  • Ferdinand for the pacifist bull Ferdinand from the Oscar-winning short Ferdinand the Bull (1938).
  • Wilbur for Goofy’s pet grasshopper, Wilbur, from the short Goofy and Wilbur (1939).
  • Gus for the gluttonous goose Gus in the short Donald’s Cousin Gus (1939).
    • The name Gus was used again (for a mouse) in the future Disney movie Cinderella.
  • Dickie for child actor Richard “Dickie” Jones, the voice of the lead character from the studio’s second feature-length film, Pinocchio (1940).
  • Blue for the Blue Fairy, the character who brought Geppetto’s puppet to life in Pinocchio.
  • Evelyn for actress Evelyn Venable, the voice of the Blue Fairy from Pinocchio.
The characters The Blue Fairy and Pinocchio from the movie "Pinocchio" (1940)
The Blue Fairy and Pinocchio from “Pinocchio
  • Cleo for Geppetto’s pet goldfish, Cleo, from Pinocchio.
  • Leigh and Ned for songwriters Leigh Harline and Ned Washington, who created the song “When You Wish Upon a Star” for Pinocchio.
  • Cliff for actor and singer Clifton “Cliff” Edwards, the voice of Jiminy Cricket from Pinocchio.
  • Daisy for Donald Duck’s second girlfriend, Daisy Duck, who first appeared in the short Mr. Duck Steps Out (1940).
  • Fantasia for the studio’s third feature-length film, Fantasia (1940). The movie’s title comes from the musical term fantasia, which refers to a musical composition without a traditional or fixed form.
  • Fred for animator Fred Moore, who redesigned Mickey Mouse for the character’s feature-length film debut in Fantasia.
  • Leopold for conductor Leopold Stokowski, who conducted the classical music in Fantasia.
  • Giles for character Sir Giles, the elderly knight from the studio’s fourth feature-length film, The Reluctant Dragon (1941).
  • Timothy for the character Timothy Q. Mouse from the studio’s fifth feature-length film, Dumbo (1941).
  • Bambi and Faline for characters Bambi and Faline from the studio’s sixth feature-length film, Bambi (1942).
  • Tyrus for Chinese-American animator Tyrus Wong, whose sketches inspired the impressionistic style of Bambi.
  • Retta for animator Retta Scott, the first female animator to receive screen credit on a Disney animated feature (Bambi).
  • José for character José Carioca, the dapper parrot who first appeared in the studio’s seventh feature-length film, Saludos Amigos (1943).
  • Pedro for character Pedro, the anthropomorphic mail plane from Saludos Amigos.
  • Chip and Dale for characters Chip and Dale, the mischievous chipmunks who first appeared in the short Private Pluto (1943).
  • Pablo for character Pablo, the warmth-seeking penguin from the studio’s ninth feature-length film, The Three Caballeros (1945).
  • Pauline for character Pauline from the short Duck Pimples (1945).
  • Cedric and Esmeralda for characters Cedric and Esmeralda from the short A Knight for a Day (1946).
  • Henry and Grace for characters Henry and Grace, the feuding newlyweds from the studio’s 10th feature-length film, Make Mine Music (1946).
  • Lulubelle for character Lulubelle from the studio’s 12th feature-length film, Fun and Fancy Free (1947).
  • Anita for singer Anita Gordon, the voice of the Golden Harp in Fun and Fancy Free.
  • Alfred and Elma for husband-and-wife wildlife filmmakers Alfred and Elma Milotte, who created Disney’s True-Life Adventures documentary series, starting with the Oscar-winning On Seal Island (1948).
The characters Tildy and Jeremiah from the movie "So Dear to My Heart" (1949)
Tildy and Jeremiah from “So Dear to My Heart
  • Jeremiah for character Jeremiah Kincaid from the studio’s 14th feature-length film, So Dear to My Heart (1949).
  • Danny for Jeremiah’s pet lamb, Danny, from So Dear to My Heart (1949). The lamb was named after champion racehorse Dan Patch.
  • Bobby for child actor Robert “Bobby” Driscoll, who played Jeremiah in So Dear to My Heart. Bobby also played the part of Jim in Treasure Island.
  • Luana for child actress Luana Patten, who played Tildy in So Dear to My Heart.
  • Marceline for the town of Marceline, Missouri. Though set in Indiana, So Dear to My Heart was strongly influenced by Walt’s childhood experiences in Marceline.
  • Melody for the studio’s 13th feature-length film, Melody Time (1948).
  • Bill and Sue for characters Pecos Bill and Slue-Foot Sue from Melody Time.
  • Angus and Thaddeus for characters Angus MacBadger and J. Thaddeus Toad from the studio’s 15th feature-length film, The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad (1949).
  • Brom and Katrina for characters Brom Bones and Katrina Van Tassel, also from The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad.
  • Cinderella for the lead character from the studio’s 16th feature-length film, Cinderella (1950).
  • Ilene for actress and singer Jacqueline Ruth “Ilene” Woods, the voice of Cinderella.
  • Verna for actress Verna Felton, the voice of the Fairy Godmother from Cinderella.
  • Treasure for the studio’s 17th feature-length film, Treasure Island (1950). This was Disney’s first entirely live-action movie.
  • Jim for character Jim Hawkins from Treasure Island.
  • Humphrey for character Humphrey the Bear, who first appeared in the short Hold That Pose (1950).

Disney’s pre-television era ended in December of 1950, when NBC aired Walt Disney’s first TV production — a Christmas special called One Hour in Wonderland, hosted by Walt himself.

Which of the names above do you like best?

P.S. Today happens to be the 68th anniversary of Disneyland, which opened in 1955 on July 17.

Sources:

Images:

  • Screenshots from the Disney films Plane Crazy (1928), Alice’s Wild West Show (1924), The Country Cousin (1936), Pinocchio (1940), and So Dear to My Heart (1949)
  • Charlotte Clark Doll Label by Redfoxtracks under CC BY-SA 3.0

[Similar post: Over 100 baby names for 100 years of the U.S. National Park Service]

Baby names associated with red: Carmine, Jagoda, Eztli

cherries, red

Looking for baby names that are associated with red — including baby names that mean “red”?

If so, you’ve come to the right place! I’ve collected dozens of options for you in this post.

Before we get to the names, though, let’s take a quick look at what the color red represents…

Symbolism of red

What does the color red signify?

In Western cultures in particular, red can be symbolic of:

  • Love
  • Passion
  • Strength
  • Power
  • Danger
  • Excitement
  • Energy

The link between the color red and emotionally-charged situations may be attributable to the fact that we blush involuntarily when we experience intense feelings (such as anger, lust, or embarrassment).

Top baby names associated with red

To determine the top red names, I first had to take into account the fact that certain names have a stronger connection to the color than other names. (I also did this for the posts on orange, yellow, blue, and purple names.)

With that in mind, here are the top baby names that have an obvious association with the color red:

  1. Ruby
  2. Rose
  3. Scarlet
  4. Carmine
  5. Mars

Now here are the same five names again, but this time around I’ve added some details (including definitions, rankings, and popularity graphs).

Ruby

The word ruby refers to the red variety of the mineral corundum. By extension, it also refers to the red color of these crystals.

The name of the stone can be traced back to the Medieval Latin term lapis rubinus, meaning “red stone” (from rubeus, meaning “red,” and lapis, meaning “stone”).

Ruby is currently the 62nd most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Ruby in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Ruby

Rose

The word rose refers to any flowering plant of the genus Rosa, the name of which ultimately derives from the Greek word for the plant, rhodon.

Roses come in various colors, but shades of red have long been favored — so much so that the word rose, by extension, has also referred to a pinkish-red or purplish-red color since the early 16th century.

Rose is currently the 116th most popular girl name in the nation.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Rose in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Rose

Scarlet

Scarlet is a bright shade of red. The name of the color comes from the Medieval Latin word scarlata (or scarlatum), which referred to a type of woolen cloth that was often, though not always, dyed red.

The more popular spelling of the name, Scarlett, represents transferred usage of the English surname. The surname Scarlett originally referred to a person who sold or worked with the cloth.

Scarlet is currently the 450th most popular girl name in the U.S. (Scarlett ranks 20th.)

Graph of the usage of the baby name Scarlet in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Scarlet

Carmine

The vocabulary word carmine (pronounced KAHR-mien) refers to the pigment made from the cochineal insect, which lives on prickly pear cacti. By extension, it also refers to the purplish-red color of this pigment.

Spanish explorers, who learned of the pigment through the Nahuas (Aztecs), began exporting it to Europe in the early 16th century. Its name (in Europe) is based on the Medieval Latin word carminium — a form of the Arabic word qirmiz, meaning “crimson,” influenced by the Latin word minium, meaning “cinnabar.”

The word also happens to be a homograph of the personal name Carmine (pronounced KAHR-mee-neh), which is the Italian masculine form of Carmen.

Carmine is currently the 1,282nd most popular boy name in the nation.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Carmine in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Carmine

Mars

The pronoun Mars initially referred to the Roman god of war.

Later, when the ancient Romans chose names for the five visible planets of the solar system, they named the one with the reddish color — which is reminiscent of blood — after the god of war. (The surface of Mars appears reddish due to the presence of iron oxide in the planet’s soil.)

Mars is currently the 1,305th most popular boy name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Mars in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Mars

More names associated with red

All the names below have an association with the color red. The names range from traditional to unusual, and their associations range from strong to slight.

Those that have been popular enough to appear in the U.S. baby name data are linked to their corresponding popularity graphs.

  • Ahmar is an Arabic masculine name meaning “red.”
  • Akane is a Japanese feminine name that — depending upon the kanji being used to write the name — can refer to the madder plant (genus Rubia), the dye made from the root of the madder plant, or the purplish-red color of that dye.
  • Amaranth flowers are frequently red. The genus name Amaranthus is derived from a combination of the ancient Greek words amarantos, meaning “unfading,” and anthos, meaning “flower.”
  • Amaryllis flowers are often red. The genus name Amaryllis is derived from the ancient Greek word amarysso, meaning “to sparkle.”
  • Anara is a Kazakh and Kyrgyz feminine name based on the word anar, meaning “pomegranate.”
  • Azalea flowers are sometimes red. The (obsolete) genus name Azalea is derived from the ancient Greek word azaleos, meaning “dry.”
bricks, red
  • Berry fruits are frequently red. The Old English word for “berry” was berie.
  • Brick is commonly red. In fact, the term “brick red” refers to the brownish-red color of red clay bricks.
  • Burgundy is a purplish-red color. The name of the shade was inspired by red wine from the region of Burgundy in France.
  • Camellia flowers are often red. The genus Camellia is was named in honor of Moravian botanist Georg Joseph Kamel.
  • Canna flowers are sometimes red. The genus name Canna is derived from the Latin word canna, meaning “reed.”
  • Cardinal birds (genus Cardinalis) — the males in particular — have red plumage. The common name “cardinal,” inspired by the red robes of Roman Catholic cardinals, is ultimately derived from the Latin word cardinalis, meaning “principal, chief.”
  • Carnelian, a variety of the mineral chalcedony, is often red. The name of the stone ultimately comes form from the Latin word cornus, which refers to a type of berry, altered by the influence of the Latin word carneus, meaning “flesh-colored.”
  • Cherry fruits are typically red. Cherry trees are part of the genus Prunus.
    • Cerise is the French word for cherry.
    • Kirsikka is the Finnish word for cherry.
    • Kiraz is the Turkish word for cherry.
  • Chrysanthemum flowers are sometimes red. The genus name Chrysanthemum is derived from a combination of the ancient Greek words khrysos, meaning “gold,” and anthemon, meaning “blossom, flower.”
  • Coral is a pink-orange shade of red. The name of the shade refers to the color of precious coral, which was first discovered in the Mediterranean Sea.
  • Crimson is a deep shade of red. Crimson pigment was originally made from the kermes insect, which lives on evergreen oaks. (The pigment fell out of favor in Europe after the introduction of carmine from the New World in the early 1500s.)
cardinal, red
  • Dahlia flowers are sometimes red. The genus Dahlia was named in honor of Swedish botanist Anders Dahl.
  • Delima is an Indonesian feminine name meaning “pomegranate.”
  • Edom is a Biblical masculine name based on the Hebrew word ‘adom, meaning “red.”
  • Erythia, based on the ancient Greek word eruthrós, meaning “red,” was the name of several figures in Greek mythology.
  • Eztli is the Nahuatl word for blood. (Fun fact: The red pigment made from cochineal that Europeans called carmine was called nocheztli, or “prickly pear blood,” by the Nahuas.)
  • Flann is an Irish masculine name meaning “blood red.”
    • Flannán is a diminutive form of Flann.
  • Garnet is a gemstone that is typically dark red. The name of the stone ultimately comes from the Latin word granatum, meaning “pomegranate” (literally, “having many seeds”) — a reference to the resemblance between garnets and pomegranate seeds.
  • Garance is a French feminine name that refers to the madder plant (genus Rubia), the dye made from the root of the madder plant, or the purplish-red color of that dye.
  • Gladiola refers to Gladiolus, a genus of plants with flowers that are sometimes red. The genus name, meaning “little sword” (a diminutive of the Latin word gladius, “sword”) refers to the shape of the leaves.
  • Gül (pronounced gool) is a Turkish feminine name meaning “rose.”
  • Helen is part of Helenium, a genus of plants with flowers that are sometimes red. The genus was named in honor of Helen of Troy.
  • Jagoda (pronounced YAH-goh-dah) is a feminine name meaning “strawberry” in Serbian, Croatian, Macedonian, Slovene, and other South Slavic languages.
  • Jasper, an opaque type of microcrystalline quartz, is commonly red. The name of the stone ultimately comes from the ancient Greek word iaspis.
  • Kamala is a Hindi feminine name based on the Sanskrit word kamala, meaning “pale red.”
  • Kimmernaq is a Greenlandic feminine name meaning “lingonberry.”
  • Lali is a Georgian feminine name meaning “ruby.”
  • Lohit is a Hindi masculine name based on the Sanskrit word lóhita, meaning “red.”
  • Orchid flowers are sometimes red. Orchids are all members of the Orchidaceae family of plants.
  • Phoenix refers to the mythical bird, but the name of that bird was based on the ancient Greek word phoinix, meaning “purple” or “crimson.”
  • Poinsettia bracts are usually red. “Poinsettia” is the common name of the plant species Euphorbia pulcherrima. The common name commemorates U.S. politician Joel Roberts Poinsett, who introduced the plant to the U.S. (from Mexico) in the 1820s.
  • Poppy flowers are commonly red. The Old English word for “poppy” was popig.
roses, red
  • Raktima is the Sanskrit word for “redness.”
  • Red, of course, refers to the color red. :)
  • Reed (also spelled Reid) comes from an English and Scottish surname that can be traced back to the Middle English word for “red.”
  • Rimmon is a Hebrew gender-neutral name meaning “pomegranate.”
  • Rohit is a Hindi masculine name based on the Sanskrit word róhita, meaning “red.”
  • Roth comes from a German surname that can be traced back to the Middle High German word rot, meaning “red.” It was originally a nickname for a red-haired person.
  • Ruadh (pronounced roo-ah) means “red” or “red-haired” in Irish and Scottish Gaelic.
    • Roy is an Anglicized form of Ruadh.
    • Ruadhán is a diminutive form of Ruadh.
    • Rowan is an Anglicized form of Ruadhán.
  • Rubina is a Portuguese and Italian and feminine name meaning “ruby.”
  • Rufus derives from the Latin word rufus, meaning “red” or “red-haired.”
    • Rufino (masculine) and Rufina (feminine) are the modern Spanish forms of the Roman family name Rufinus, which was based on Rufus.
  • Russell comes from a surname that can be traced back to the Old French word rous, meaning “red.”
  • Shani is a Hebrew gender-neutral name meaning “scarlet, red.”
  • Strawberry fruits are red. Strawberry plants are part of the genus Fragaria.
  • Tulip flowers are often red. The name of the flower can be traced back to the Ottoman Turkish word tülbent, meaning “turban.”
  • Ulaan is a Mongolian gender-neutral name meaning “red.”
  • Vadelma is a Finnish feminine name meaning “raspberry.”
  • Vardan is an Albanian masculine name meaning “rose.”
  • Verbena flowers are sometimes red. The genus name Verbena is derived from the Latin word verbena, which referred to the leaves, twigs, and branches of specific plants (like laurel, olive, and myrtle) that were used during religious ceremonies.
  • Vered is a Hebrew feminine name meaning “rose.”
  • Vermilion is an orange-red color. Vermilion pigment was originally made from the mineral cinnabar.
  • Warda is an Arabic feminine name meaning “rose.”
  • Zinnia flowers are sometimes red. The genus Zinnia was named in honor of German botanist Johann Gottfried Zinn.

Can you think of any other names that have a connection to the color red?

Sources:

Images by Joanna Kosinska from Unsplash, Waltteri Paulaharju from Pixabay, Skyler Ewing from Unsplash, and Pexels from Pixabay

Where did the baby name Quisto come from in 1984?

The character Quisto Champion from the TV western/soap opera "The Yellow Rose" (1983-1984).
Quisto from “The Yellow Rose

The curious name Quisto debuted in the U.S. baby name data in the middle of the 1980s:

  • 1986: unlisted
  • 1985: unlisted
  • 1984: 9 baby boys named Quisto [debut]
  • 1983: unlisted
  • 1982: unlisted

While Quisto was only in the data once, it debuted impressively enough to tie for top one-hit wonder boy name of 1984.

Where did it come from?

The short-lived nighttime soap opera/western The Yellow Rose (1983-1984), which was set in West Texas on the sprawling “Yellow Rose” ranch. The ranch had been built by the late Wade Champion, but was now being run by Wade’s young widow Colleen (played by Cybill Shepherd) and his sons Roy and “Quisto” (real name Ramon).

I don’t know how the character acquired his nickname (if anyone out there watched the show and remembers, please leave a comment!), but I can tell you about the cowboy slang term quisto. It refers to a quirt — a woven-leather whip with a short handle and “a lash of three or four heavy, loose thongs.” The word quirt is derived from the Mexican Spanish word cuarta, “whip,” which comes from the Spanish word cuerda, “cord.”

And Quisto wasn’t the only Yellow Rose character to have an impact on baby names. Chance McKenzie — a “lanky, taciturn” ex-convict and ranch-hand played by Sam Elliott — gave the baby name Chance a boost in 1984:

  • 1986: 508 baby boys named Chance [rank: 368th]
  • 1985: 650 baby boys named Chance [rank: 313th]
  • 1984: 880 baby boys named Chance [rank: 249th]
  • 1983: 230 baby boys named Chance [rank: 555th]
  • 1982: 186 baby boys named Chance [rank: 636th]

What are your thoughts on the names Chance and Quisto? Which one would you be more likely to use?

Sources:

Baby names associated with orange: Saffron, Anatole, Keahi

small pumpkins

Halloween is right around the corner! Has the upcoming holiday made you curious about baby names associated with the color orange?

If so, you’re in luck — I’ve collected dozens of ideas for you in this post.

But, before we get to the names, let’s take a look at what the color orange represents…

Symbolism of orange

What does the color orange signify?

In Western cultures in particular, orange can be symbolic of:

  • Warmth
  • Creativity
  • Adventure
  • Freshness
  • Happiness
  • Attraction
  • Success

It can also be associated with safety. A vivid reddish-orange — one that contrasts well with the blue of the sky — is used to make clothing and equipment highly visible in certain circumstances (e.g., at construction sites, during hunting season).

In Eastern cultures, orange is considered a sacred color. In Hinduism, for example, orange represents fire and, thereby, purity (as impurities are burned away by fire).

Top baby names associated with orange

To determine the top orange names, I first had to take into account the fact that certain names have a stronger connection to the color than other names. (I did this for the top purple names as well.)

With that in mind, here are the top baby names that have an obvious association with the color orange:

  1. Autumn
  2. Ember
  3. Amber
  4. Blaze
  5. Marigold

Now here are the same five names again, but this time around I’ve added some details (including definitions, rankings, and popularity graphs).

Autumn

The word autumn refers to the season during which the leaves of deciduous trees turn various colors, including orange. Halloween — a holiday strongly associated with the color orange — is also celebrated during Autumn (at least in the Northern Hemisphere).

Autumn is currently the 66th most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Autumn in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Autumn

Ember

The word ember refers a glowing, slowly burning piece of solid fuel (like wood or coal). It’s often used in the plural to refer to the smoldering remains of a fire.

Ember is currently the 163rd most popular girl name in the nation.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Ember in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Ember

Amber

The word amber refers to fossilized tree resin that is commonly used as a gemstone. By extension, the word also refers to the yellowish-orange color of this material.

The fossilized resin, which washes up on the seashore in the Baltic region, came to be called “amber” during the Middle Ages — likely due to an association with ambergris (a material produced by sperm whales that also washes up on the shore).

Amber is currently the 534th most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Amber in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Amber

Blaze

The vocabulary word blaze refers to a fire, particularly one that’s burning intensely. Blaze is also a homophone of the (more traditional) name Blaise, which ultimately derives from the Latin word blaesus, meaning “lisping.”

Blaze is currently the 775th most popular boy name in the nation. (Blaise ranks 999th.)

Graph of the usage of the baby name Blaze in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Blaze

Marigold

The word marigold refers to any flowering plant of either the New World genus Tagetes or the Old World genus Calendula. By extension, it also refers to the yellowish-orange color of these flowers.

Marigold is currently the 1,022nd most popular girl name in the U.S.

Graph of the usage of the baby name Marigold in the U.S. since 1880
Usage of the baby name Marigold

More names associated with orange

Ready for the rest?

All the names below have an association with the color orange. The names range from common to uncommon, and their associations range from strong to slight.

Those that have been popular enough to appear in the U.S. baby name data are linked to their corresponding popularity graphs.

oranges
  • Aethon (also spelled Aithon) is derived from the ancient Greek word aithon, which means “burning, blazing.”
  • Alba is a feminine name meaning “dawn” in Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Romanian, and other Romance languages.
  • Anatolios was an ancient Greek name derived from the word anatole, meaning “sunrise.”
    • Anatolius is the Latinized form of Anatolios.
    • Anatolia is a feminine form of Anatolius.
    • Anatole is the modern French masculine form of Anatolius.
    • Anatoliy is the modern Russian and Ukrainian masculine form of Anatolius.
  • Apricot fruits are yellowish-orange. Apricot trees are part of the genus Prunus.
  • Aurora, the Latin word for “dawn,” was the name of the Roman goddess of dawn.
  • Azar is a Persian gender-neutral name meaning “fire.”
  • Canna flowers are sometimes orange. The genus name Canna is derived from the Latin word canna, meaning “reed.”
  • Carnelian, a variety of the mineral chalcedony, is frequently orange. The name of the stone ultimately comes from the Latin word cornus, which refers to a type of berry, altered by the influence of the Latin word carneus, meaning “flesh-colored.”
  • Chrysanthemum (pronounced krih-SAN-thuh-muhm) flowers are often orange. The genus name Chrysanthemum is derived from a combination of the ancient Greek words khrysos, meaning “gold,” and anthemon, meaning “blossom, flower.”
  • Citrine, a variety of the mineral quartz, is usually orange. The adjective citrine can be traced back to the Latin word citrus.
  • Clementine fruits are a cross between mandarin orange and sweet orange. They were named after French priest Clément Rodier, who discovered the cultivar while in Algeria. The name Clément is derived from the Latin word clemens, meaning “merciful.”
  • Copper is a metallic element with a lustrous orange-brown color.
  • Dahlia flowers are sometimes orange. The genus Dahlia was named in honor of Swedish botanist Anders Dahl.
  • Dawn refers to the period of time in the early morning (before sunrise) when the sky begins to brighten with daylight. This light at dawn tends to have an orange hue. The word dawn can be traced back to the Old English verb dagian, meaning “to become day.”
  • Dysis, the ancient Greek word for “sunset,” was the name of the Greek goddess of the hour of sunset.
  • Eos, the ancient Greek word for “dawn,” was the name of the Greek goddess of dawn.
fire
  • Fajr is an Arabic feminine name meaning “dawn.”
  • Fiamma (pronounced FYAM-ma) is an Italian feminine name meaning “flame.”
  • Fox fur, if you’re talking about the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), is largely orange. The word fox is ultimately derived from a Proto-Indo-European word meaning “tail.”
  • Gladiola refers to Gladiolus, a genus of plants with flowers that are sometimes orange. The genus name, meaning “little sword” (a diminutive of the Latin word gladius, “sword”) refers to the shape of the leaves.
  • Helen is a form of the ancient Greek name Helene, which is likely based on the word helene, meaning “torch.” Also, plants of the genus Helenium have flowers that are sometimes orange. The genus was named in honor of Helen of Troy.
  • Honey can be orange. The Old English word for “honey” was hunig.
    • Meli was the ancient Greek word for “honey.”
  • Iskra is a feminine name meaning “spark” in Russian, Serbian, Croatian, Bulgarian, and other Slavic languages.
  • Jack is part of “Jack-o’-Lantern” — a term that, since the 1800s, has referred to a carved pumpkin used as a lantern during Halloween. It originated as “Jack of the lantern” in 17th-century England, where it was used as a generic term for any lantern-carrying night watchman.
  • June (besides being a month) is part of “Flaming June” — the name of the 1895 painting by Frederic Leighton. “Flaming June” features a red-headed woman wearing a diaphanous orange dress and sleeping by the sea (which reflects the golden rays of the setting sun).
The Frederic Leighton painting "Flaming June" (1895)
“Flaming June”
  • Keahi is a Hawaiian gender-neutral name meaning “the fire.”
  • Kealaula is a Hawaiian gender-neutral name that means “the light of early dawn” or “the sunset glow.” The literal definition is “the flaming road” (ala means “path, road,” and ula means “to flame”).
  • Monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) have wings that are largely orange. They were named “monarch” in the 1800s, possibly in honor of England’s King William III, who was also the Prince of Orange. The word is derived from a combination of the ancient Greek words monos, meaning “alone,” and arkhos, meaning “ruler.”
  • Orange, of course, refers to the color orange. :) Orange fruits were introduced to Europe by the Moors in the 10th century. The word for the fruit, which can be traced back to Sanskrit, entered the English language (via French) in the late 14th century. The first recorded use of “orange” as a color name in English didn’t come along until the early 16th century.
    • This explains why many things that are clearly orange — like red hair, red foxes, and the robin redbreast — are called “red”: They were named long before the color-word “orange” entered the English language.
  • Orchid flowers are sometimes orange. Orchids are all members of the Orchidaceae family of plants.
  • Oriole is a type of bird that often has orange plumage. “Oriole” is the common name of birds in the genera Icterus and Oriolidae. The common name is derived from the Latin word aureolus, meaning “golden.”
  • Peach fruits are typically orange. Peach trees are part of the genus Prunus.
  • Pele, the Hawaiian word for “lava flow, volcano, eruption,” was the name of the Hawaiian goddess of volcanoes.
  • Pyrrhos, meaning “flame-colored,” was an ancient Greek name derived from the word pyr, meaning “fire.”
    • Pyrrhus is the Latinized form of Pyrrhos.
    • Pyrrha is the feminine form of Pyrrhus.
  • Robin redbreast originally referred to the Old World songbird Erithacus rubecula, which has orange plumage on the face and breast. “Robin” is a Middle English diminutive of the name Robert.
  • Roth comes from a German surname that can be traced back to the Middle High German word rot, meaning “red.” It was originally a nickname for a red-haired person.
  • Ruadh (pronounced roo-ah) means “red” or “red-haired” in Irish and Scottish Gaelic.
    • Roy is an Anglicized form of Ruadh.
    • Ruadhán is a diminutive form of Ruadh.
    • Rowan is an Anglicized form of Ruadhán.
  • Rufus derives from the Latin word rufus, meaning “red” or “red-haired.”
    • Rufino (masculine) and Rufina (feminine) are the modern Spanish forms of the Roman family name Rufinus, which was based on Rufus.
  • Rusty is an adjective referring to rust (iron oxide), which tends to be orange-brown.
Saffron robes of Theravada Buddhist monks in Thailand
Saffron robes (of Buddhist monks)
  • Saffron is a spice made from the styles and stigmas of Crocus sativus flowers. By extension, the word — which can be traced back to the Arabic name for the spice, za’faran — also refers to the deep yellowish-orange color of fabrics dyed with saffron.
  • Seville orange is a variety of bitter orange named after the Spanish city of Sevilla.
  • Shachar is a Hebrew gender-neutral name meaning “dawn.”
  • Shraga is an Aramaic masculine name meaning “candle.”
  • Shula is an Arabic feminine name meaning “flame.”
  • Smith comes from a surname that originally referred to a metalworker, such as a blacksmith or a farrier. When heated metal (like iron) comes out of a fire to be forged, it’s often glowing a yellowish-orange color. The smith in “blacksmith” is likely derived from the Old English verb smitan, meaning “to smite” or “to strike” (as with a hammer).
  • Sunrise and Sunset are times at which the sun appears reddish-orange. Particles in the Earth’s atmosphere scatter more short-wavelength light than long-wavelength light, so when the sun is low on the horizon — and traveling a longer distance through the atmosphere to reach your eyes — you’ll end up seeing less violet and blue, but more red and orange.
  • Tangerine fruits are orange. Tangerine trees are part of the genus Citrus.
  • Tawny is an adjective that refers to a brownish-orange color.
  • Tiger (Panthera tigris), the largest living species of cat, has fur that is mostly orange.
  • Tigerlily refers to “tiger lily,” the common name of several species of flowering plant in the genus Lilium — particularly the species Lilium lancifolium — that have showy orange flowers.
  • Ushas, the Sanskrit word for “dawn,” was the name of the Vedic (Hindu) goddess of dawn.
  • Valencia orange is a cultivar of sweet orange named after the Spanish city of València.
  • Zinnia flowers are sometimes orange. The genus Zinnia was named in honor of German botanist Johann Gottfried Zinn. (Fun fact: An orange zinnia blossomed in space in early 2016!)
  • Zora is a feminine name meaning “dawn” in Serbian, Czech, Croatian, Bulgarian, and other Slavic languages.

Can you think of any other names that have a connection to the color orange?

Sources:

Images by Karalina S from Unsplash, Sheraz Shaikh from Unsplash, Ralph from Pixabay, and Evan Krause from Unsplash